Posts Tagged ‘Australia 2011’

Australia – 2012 01 01-09 – Sydney, last days

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Coogee Beach
The Time is over and my skin is (still) pale.

A Quick Math

few days left +
pale skin +
cold winter waiting for me in London =
BEACH BEACH BEACH!!

Wouldn’t you do the same?

I’ve been spending the most of my time at Coogee Beach, Bondi Beach and Manly Beach… I loved it, I loved it, I loved it!!!!

Hey, sunbathing wasn’t my sole activity: between a beach and another I’ve been meeting with some of my new friends met during this incredible travel. Some of them they came to Sydney for the fireworks as well, that give us the opportunity to spend some quality time together, again.

I’ve been at Bondi Beach with Zita and Christian, I’ve been for a brunch at the Fish Market with Elisa and Stefania, and with Elisa I’ve even been to Taronga Zoo as well, I met again my dear friends Marco and Veronica, just flu from PErth and that will stay in Sydney for the rest of the month; finally I did reencounter with Yoy and Lotte, taking them for the gorgeous “Burger with Lot” at Justine’s “Kiwi Style Fish and Chips”.
Elisa and Stefania at the Fish Market

Just the night before my departure Justine organised a huge house party with the lot of her family and friends to say good-by to me and to some of them returning to New Zealand after a quick visit to their dears.
That was hell of a BBQ feast!!
Justine's Family

Even for this fairytale an end has to come, and that was the day: the 8th of January 2012.

Ready to depart and take the plane back to London, I am taking in my heart a piece of Australia. I will think, I will wonder and soon I’ll have to decide what I really want to do.

Is Australia the right place for me?
Surely I love it a lot, but the question is: did I ‘FALL IN LOVE WITH IT’?

I guess that thinking will be my ‘homework’ for a while once back to my ‘real life’….

P.S.
As soon as I arrived in London I went to my new place where I will spend the rest of the year with Diego and my other new housemates. Diego gifted me with unique and really nice ‘solar powered’ carillon with the shape of a ancient record-player (see the pictures below).


“Last days in Sydney”

From Australia – 20120101-09 – Sydney, last days, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 2/03/2012 (39 items)

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Australia – 2012 01 04 – Sydney’s Taronga Zoo

Monday, February 13th, 2012

Elisa and I at the Taronga Zoo with a koala
Australia is a wild country, still is not easy to spot wild animals if you stick in the cities.

In facts, so far, I haven’t had the opportunity to meet a Koala, and it’s since I was a child and I was watching the animated series ‘Georgie’, getting attached to his koala ‘Lup’, and not to forget ‘Colby e i suoi piccoli amici’ [Colby and his little friends], I always desired to see one.
That is why, after reincountering with my lovely friend Elisa, it’s been decided to spend a good full day at the Taronga Zoo.

We were a bit sceptic at the beginning, Zoos in Europe can be real crap, then we also have the idea that animals in captivity are suffering creatures.
… believe me, that wasn’t the case, after a very few minutes we both recognised that the place we had landed was a paradise for the wild beasts, where they are loved and respected.

Each species had his own environment perfectly recreated adapting to the natural outlines of the hill where the zoo is located; there’s a lot of space for each creature, almost no cages, of course they were all kept in safe and protected environments usually defined by glasses or nets hidden by trees and bushes.
The Peacock
Tigers, lions, seals, kangaroos, elephants, snow leopards, the firefox, parrots of every kind, giraffes, rhinos, polar bears, spiders, stelth insects, a huge varieties of snakes, dragons, lizards and more and more and more… and indeed the KOALA!!!! we had to stop our tour after six hours because we were literally drained!
I believe we drunk something like 3 litters of water each that day, and still we were thirsty at the end.

Enjoy the pictures, and don’t forget to go to the fantastic Taronga Zoo when you go to Sydney!!


“Visit at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney with Elisa”

From Australia – 20120104 – Sydney’s Taronga Zoo, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 2/03/2012 (61 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 27-30 – Melbourne

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

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Finally in Melbourne, the most European of OZ’s cities, in visit as ambassador to a branch of the Calderone Family. Not an easy job, a big honour.

Entering the airport from the arrivals gates, there were my uncles waiting for me like two bodyguards.

For four days then, they escorted me around the Melbourne’s places that welcomed them sixty years ago when they migrated.

Piazza Italia, North Carlton, Victoria Market are just dome of these places, and everywhere they took me they new people, it seemed to me to be back in an Italy 30 years in the past. Everyday I’ve been drinking about four to six expressos of the best kind, strong and creamy.

Although Christmas and all the celebrations where already over, every single day of my stay in Melbourne I did enjoy reach breakfasts, long lunches and banquets for dinner, up to fifteen different dishes for a single meal in some cases.
The main job of my aunties has been to feed me al the time, not for a single minute I missed Italy in those days!!

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They did also ‘allowed’ me some free time and some rest by time to time, and in such moments I did have he chance to meet again with Candy my friend met previously in Fraser Island. It’s amazing how quick you create connections when you are traveling, you usually don’t have such openness when live your everyday life.

Twelve hours of bus drive are keeping me away from alpha and omega of this great adventure

With the bitter taste of sadness on my mouth and my heart richer and more stories about my grandpa and my family, the time has come to head again to Sydney…

According to my auntie I couldn’t leave without the last food gift…
Three enormous sandwiches in the best Italian style and no less than four bananas.


“Visit to family in Melbourne”

From Australia – 20111227-30 – Melbourne, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 1/06/2012 (8 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 23-26 – ULURU Safari and Kings Canyon

Friday, January 6th, 2012

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THE BEST CHRISTMAS EVER!!!!

Although diving in the Great Reef Barrier has been the most amazing experience of this travel ( and together with the Dolomites view from Renon in Bozen, this has been one of the most amazing experience in my life), the ULURU safari has been the most complete, entertaining and fulfilling piece of my journey.

We had a great, involving, caring, knowledgeable guide who wanted us to call him BEAR while his name is Nathan.

Spent three days drinking 1 litter of water per hour, driving almost 500 km per day sleeping 3 hours per night and waking up at 3:30am to go for early morning walks under the sun with 45°C…

We learned a lot, we heard magical stories about aborigines that we are not allowed to tell other people unless take them to the sacred spots of the ULURU, we learnt about the creators.

Now we know that the ULURU is not sacred, but it is like a building hosting sacred areas where there are signs and knowledge that ‘White people’ eyes would not beagle to see but aboriginals do.

We heard the legend of the Aboriginal Woman’s ghost living the camp by the Kings Canyon.

We learnt how the ULURU and the OLGAS geologically formed, and then you think how insignificant the life of human beings is respect the lire of planet Earth.
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We where 24 souls crossing the lands of the aboriginals. We where from 8 different countries.
Te magic of Christmas just bound us together like we were at and old friends reunion after a long period away. We danced YMCA, and some Aussy dance with Kangaroos and laces.

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We draw camels, koalas, kangaroos..and penguins. We drunk a Fucking Good Port with some serious cigars while checking out Orion and the Milky Way.

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We have seen shooting stars… and shitting stars as well (isn’t it Cleo?)

We fought with Red-back spires, wolf-spiders, won against the scorpions, eaten grasshoppers and kangaroo, rode camels, and met meter long lizards, pictured cacatuas and visited the Gardens of Eden.

Did I mention that our bus was driven by Santa?

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“Christmas at theULURU and Kings Canyon”

From Australia – 20111223-26 – ULURU & Kings Canyon Safari, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 1/04/2012 (131 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 19-22 – Cairns

Saturday, December 31st, 2011

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This time at the Xbase Brisbane hostel wasn’t that bad, the room was on a different floor, much cleaner and tighter room, only three of us, me and two girls from germany.

It’s been a nice sleep, with no fear of bedbugs at least.

Easy it was to get to the airport then flying to Cairns.

Just popped out of Cairns’ airport I felt the difference of weather, finally summer, sun heat and humidity. Real tropical weather that brought back to me The same sensations that I had in Catania, Sicily (Italy) a few years ago. It makes difficult to breath, but it makes you feeling you’re on real holidays.

The first approach to cairns was “don’t go for a swim otherwise you’ll be food for crocodiles”.
Also, instead of birds there are bats (flying foxes) on the trees or flying in the sky on the day light.

Cairns seems a bit depressing because the most of the people visiting the town is coming here just to do activities on the surrounding environments like exploring the Rain Forrest or going diving on the Great Reef Barrier. In facts this is exactly what I am here for.

The night at the hostel, waiting for the day after, has been boring, only a few people busy on their own activities.

Then I’ve been for three days and two nights on a diving cruise (what an experience!), there I met some cool people, among them, remarkable are Jan from Germany, Zita and Christian respectively from Hungary and Germany and two sweet girls from Sweden, Amelie and Melina.
I’ll be writing about my snorkelling/diving adventure on a separate post as it worth to dedicate a good space for it.
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It is with Jan, Amelie and Melina that I spent my last night in Cairns before flying to Alice Springs where new real adventures have been waiting for me.


“City of Cairns in preparation for the reef barrier”

From Australia – 20111219-22 – Cairns, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 12/24/2011 (19 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 17-18 – Fraser Island

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

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It’s been a week now that I landed in Austral hemisphere. The holiday start flowing in the veins and London is a far memory now.

We left Brisbane around 7 a.m., I was so relieved to abandon that oriole hostel.
It took three hours to get to Rainbow Beach, north of Brisbane, prepare the track we are using for our journey, to be driven on the sand of the Island.

Fifteen minutes later we took the ferry for a ten minutes ride to Fraser Island.
Fraser Island is unique in it’s kind, it an island made exclusively on sand and is held up by the vegetation that thanks to the roots it has been gable to create hills and lakes and river.

All Fraser Island is covered by an amazing rain forest.
There are approximatively 40 lakes spread around the island there is even a creek that flows clear pure water that is drinkable and that apparently takes 2,000 years to com to the surface.

We’ve been walking and hiking through the vegetation and hills and we took a couple of baths in the lakes.

We spend the night in a resort just 5 minutes walk from the beach, there I get closer to Nathan Driver our guide on the Island and to Candy, a very nice German girl that is traveling Australia for a month like I do.
We are following different paths, but we will probably meet agin in Melbourne on the 27th or 28th of December.

In the night the three of use went to the beach to admire the sky and I’ve been amazed on how clear was possible to see the Milky Way all across the sky, I also noticed that the half-moon here is shown in the opposite way than it is shown in the boreal hemisphere.

Te second day of the visit has not been less amazing than the first. We went to visit some nice beaches, Elly Creek and a beautiful lake that will probably disappear in twenty years from now.

Again the pictures will tell you the rest of the story.

Unfortunately on the night I’ll be back the horrible hostel in Brisbane. But it will be only one night before leaving to Cairns and the Outer Great Reef Barrier 🙂


“Two days in Fraser Island, only thing I wasn’t able top shot was the Milky Way”

From Australia – 20111217-18 – Fraser Island, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 12/21/2011 (56 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 16 – Sea World (Gold Coast)

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

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Before leaving Surfers Paradise I decided to take a look around so I bought the very expensive ticket to Sea World Theme Park, just out a few minutes drive of Surfers Paradise, in the Gold Coast. 80.00 AUS dollars!!! If you like animals it all worth it, believe me.

I had the chance to pet rays, to pictures dolphins, to see the polar bear swimming, attend to a show with performing seals and last but not least I had the pleasure to watch penguins dancing and swimming, not to forget picturing sharks a few centimetres of distance (behind a glass, though).

All of that is better explained by the pictures annexed.
I must say that this was a really entertaining day! Thanks Nev for the advice!

After such a big day I spent my last few hours in Surfers Paradise walking around the street marked… I almost missed the bus to Brisbane.

I have to admit that the hostel in Brisbane was the worst hostel in which I ever slept, they also had bed-bugs and who has lived with me at the Bowden Court in London know I nasty they could be. Fortunately I didn’t have the pleasure the meet them that night.
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Next stop, Fraser Island.

“Sea World”

From Australia – 20111216 – Sea World (Gold Coast), posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 12/21/2011 (46 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 15-16 – Surfers Paradise

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

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It took fourteen hours by coach to reach Surfers Paradise.
I’m surprised about my capacity to bear with such long traveling times… It wasn’t like this few years ago.

Once arrived at the coach station after a few minutes the pick-up service of the hostel was there.
This is a free service that I understand all the hostels and not only offer all around Australia, this is something that at my advice they should introduce in London as well.

That was my first time in a hostel after a long time. Pretty simp,e as accommodation, but clean and pleasant.
The funny thing is that my room mates were two girls from Clapham, South London, and a girl from Glasgow, Scotland.
Later in the evening I also met another girl, she was from Manchester.

It looks like that all UK went on holidays in Australia!!!
By the way none of these people was really prone to conversation so I ended up to a very early sleep after a nice burger on a local fast food shop.

All the afternoon I’ve been walking around the town centre because on the beach the wind was so strong that you would freeze sitting on the sand.
The beach extends uninterrupted for 100 kilometres and is all surrounded by nice and modern skyscrapers. From that and from the way the centre is organised you understand that the place is born like a touristic town, no differently than many of the Italian coast resort areas, with the small difference that here in Surfers Paradise is summer 365 days a year.
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Honestly speaking the stay here on the Golden Coast have been enough boring also due to the bad weather conditions.

Exception to that has been an hour of amusement in swimming on the ocean at 5 a.m. The following morning when the sun wasn’t already shaded by the clouds.

Before leaving the Surfs Paradise I will visit the Sea World theme park, then I will head towards Brisbane.


From Australia – 20111215-16 – Surfers Paradise, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 12/19/2011 (51 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 14 – Newcastle

Friday, December 16th, 2011

20111216-190347.jpgToday, thursday rhe 14th, we all woke up pretty early. The girls, Jus and Vee, walked me to the train station in Burwood.

Justine is taking the rests of my lasagne and tiramisù for his colleagues at the Fish & Chips. She probably wants to introduce some new food in her menu -_^

After a quick goodbye I took the train to Newcastle. The trip was pleasant and quick, about three hours spent listening to some music and watching the landscapes, so wild respect Europe. That is why I prefer to travel by ground instead of flying.

I arrived in Newcastle in the late morning and after a quick visit to the main streets I went to the beach were I spent most of the day walking down the coast.
It was definitively amazing. Unfortunately the weather has been horrible, wind, cold and no sun, with a short exception in the afternoon that costed my a burnt nose and maculated feet as I was wearing flip flops.

At 3:30pm all the touristic centre closes up, so my only chance to have a dinner was to walk twenty minutes further just after the residential area, on the other side of the hill that is Newcastle. That gave me the chance to admire beautiful private houses surrounded by majestic trees. It. Reminded me a mix of USA and Italy.

There so much green in Australia!!

I was not supposed to stay in Newcastle overnight so I went back to the station were I took a coach that will take me on a fourteen hour ride until Surfers Paradise (Gold Coast), Queensland, just before Brisbane.


“Visit at Newcastle”

From Australia – 20111214 – Newcastle, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 12/15/2011 (29 items)

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Australia – 2011 12 08-14 – Sydney

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

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My first days in Sydney.

After 5 years I finally hugged Justine again. She’s hosting me in Sydney with her lovely cousins Vee and Nev.

The weather has been not, and still is not, ideal, I anyway managed to spend some time at the Manly Beach. Big waves, surfers, lot of wind, I felt like I was in the Point Break movie. Fortunately nor back rubbery has happened O_O

Gorgeous breakfast at the Veteran’s club with Jus and her choir’s friends. That was on Sunday. Just to begin with.

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I then met my friend Elia, that has moved to Australia one month ago and is now traveling around working in farms or sleeping in hostels. He now has left to Melbourne countryside, we will meet there again on the 28th.

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On 13/12/11 (what a funny date) it was Vee’s birthday.
I cooked for her my ‘classics’: Lasagna and Tiramisù.

Now I left Sydney going towards Brisbane, next stop Newcastle.
I’ll be back to Sydney on the 30th most probably, hoping for a more summer-like weather.


“My first days in Sydney: Just, Vee, Neville and Elia”

From Australia – 20111208-14 – Sydney, posted by Marco Massari Calderone on 12/14/2011 (28 items)

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